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    Description

    Ex Nelson Bunker Hunt Collection

    Q. Servilius Caepio (M. Junius) Brutus, assassin of Caesar and Imperator (44-42 BC). AR denarius (19mm, 3.91 gm, 1h). NGC Choice XF5/5 - 5/5. Military mint moving with Brutus and Cassius in Western Asia Minor or Northern Greece, 43-42 BC, Pedanius Costa, legate. LEG-COSTA, laureate head of Apollo right, hair in parallel waves atop head and falling in two long tendrils down neck; spike border / IMP-BRVTVS, military trophy consisting of helmet, cuirass, oval shield with curved sides and two crossed spears mounted on pole; dotted border. Crawford 506/2. Sydenham 1296. RSC 4. CRI 209. Lovely cabinet toning.

    Ex Nelson Bunker Hunt Collection (Sotheby's, 20 June 1991), lot 671

    Marcus Junius Brutus was a blue-blooded Roman who had attained a fortune by lending money at exorbitant interest rates when he was suborned into the conspiracy against his former benefactor, Julius Caesar. As his distant ancestor had entered history as a great tyrannicide, Brutus soon became the de-facto leader and spokesmen for the assassins. After the Ides of March, Brutus induced a cowed senate to give him a governorship in northern Greece and promptly departed to raise money and arms for the brewing civil war against Caesar's adherents. He cut a brutal swath through Greece, Thrace and Asia Minor, looting city treasuries and enforcing horrendous taxes at the point of a sword. He turned his ill-gotten gains into silver denarii to pay his growing army and navy, including this type. Brutus and his companions were soon maneuvered into battle against the Caesarians at Philippi in Greece, where Marc Antony proved to be much the better general. Brutus took his own life with the very dagger he had plunged into Caesar, earning this unattractive character the reputation as a martyr for the cause of liberty.


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